March 31st, 2013


They Had The Best Intentions

I wrote this to kelkyag's first prompt "Something in Mayin's story."

Ley and Edan were hosting a dinner in a restaurant for an acquaintance of Edan’s and Edan’s elder sister, Mayin. They were, frankly, matchmaking and both the invitees knew it. “You’ve both been discharged after a decade away,” Edan had told Georas from his work’s Technical Support Division. “You have that in common, at least. She’s very quiet, I don’t think she knows what to talk about to people who weren’t enlisted.”

“It can be difficult,” Georas had agreed. “All the things we used to talk about aren’t really appropriate anymore. Gossip about the war was an important survival currency. Now,” he flashed a smile, “not nearly so much, but I haven’t been able to find an acceptable substitute.”

“You’ve got nothing to lose by meeting her,” Edan had urged and so Georas had agreed to come to this dinner for four. The restaurant was at the top of a spire, the view being one of its selling points. The tables were arranged around the edge of the viewing platform and there was a dance band that unkind reviewers had suggested was to give diners something to do as they waited between courses. Edan had booked them a table in the middle rank, neither next to the viewing windows nor next to the dance floor.

The sister was nice. Shorter than him, with short, dark hair and fair skin. Ankle length dinner dress in a muted orange-pink colour, a matching clutch bag under her arm and heeled sandals on her feet. Her expression was not shy, precisely, but definitely watchful. She looked like a tech, or a comms op, maybe even ship’s crew. She even asked intelligent questions about his work, and seemed to understand his answers.

Edan’s work acquaintance, Georas, seemed to be a very together sort of fellow, his brown hair still in a military cut. He seemed very buttoned down, neither as squirrelly as some techs she’d worked with or as ultra-focussed as others. Mayin liked that he didn’t assume she wouldn’t understand his answers to her questions and because she was paying attention to him she merely noted that a largish party was being shown to a long table next to the viewing window. Something about the group kicked at her brain, but she firmly squashed her hypervigilance and continued with her conversation. She saw exactly when it all went pear-shaped over the entrée. He asked her which unit she’d been mustered out of, she answered him truthfully and saw his smile turn into a rictus.

When the entrées were finished he and Edan went to the men’s room together.

“You told me that she was shy,” Georas said furiously. “She’s not shy, she’s just deciding whether she’s going to kill me or not. That entire unit was, is, crazy. They use enemy finger bones for poker chips! No, sorry. I’m just not interested. Here’s the money for the food I ordered. I know she’s your sister, but please don’t ask me about this again.”

Edan came back to the table alone and made Georas’ apologies. Mayin heard what he said about a stomach upset but knew why Georas had bailed on the evening. She straightened her back and prepared to brave out the rest of the dinner. Edan called over a waiter and as the fourth setting was being cleared from the table a familiar voice behind Mayin said, “Excuse me, but may I have this dance?”

She turned and Oberxiao Huhn Jan-li stood there offering her his hand. He was resplendent in a formal uniform, his cybernetic hand and eye gleaming in their respective fashions, the blonde hair that seemed odd to her with his skin tone was cropped and neatly combed, and he was unequivocally pleased to see her.

stunned fez cat

Landing Page: Mayin

When one of her parents' five children was to be drafted for a decade's service in a generations long interstellar war, Mayn volunteered while her brothers were still discussing how to decide which of them would be chosen.  Now, she's home, the war is over and Mayin is trying to readjust to a civilian life.  She also has a suitor...

The stories so far are:

Back Again;
In The Ashes of Victory;
Working On Plan B;
Next Moves;
Discussion and Declaration;
Mayin's Lack Of A Love Life Analyzed;
They Had The Best Intentions;
On the Dance Floor;
Fitting In;
Logic Fail (2);
An Old Friend;
A Walk In The Park;
Getting Out More;
An Educational Experience Goes Completely Pear Shaped;
The Responsible Adults Need To Get Together....;
The Party Assembles;
Rules of Engagement;
Rules of Engagement 2;
Talk Turns to Action;
All In Motion; and
On The Ground.

There is also a background piece, The Road To War: a background piece for the October Prompt Request.